The UFC lost a top flight lightweight last night when popular 155er Kenny Florian announced he’d fought for the final time and was retiring as the result of a herniated disc in his back. Florian first brought the injury up in early 2012, opting to avoid back surgery and hoping it would heal naturally. Unfortunately, it appears his condition has not improved to the point he can train at full speed.

“I’ve dealt with injuries before and I’ve dealt with a back injury before, but with this new injury that I suffered in November, I just haven’t been the same since,” said the 36-year old Florian to a number of disheartened onlookers at the Ultimate Fighter 15 Finale weigh-ins. “I hope that everyone saw a guy who really dedicated his life to the sport and a guy who always worked really hard to evolve in every single fight and every single session, and to get better and hopefully take the sport to another level.”

Florian made his UFC debut in April 2005 as a middleweight finalist on TUF 1. Though he lost the bout he bounced back in fine fashion, winning three in a row and earning a shot at the lightweight belt. Overall Florian fought in four different divisions and competed for a divisional title on three separate occasions. He retires with a record of 14-6 and success against the likes of Takanori Gomi, Roger Huerta, and Clay Guida.


MMATraining Take: It’s a shame to see Florian go but understandable given his health. Though he’ll have a fine career as a broadcaster for sure I will definitely miss his technical prowess inside the cage. He always came to fight and was a threat to beat most he faced.